Pelvic Floor Physiotherapy in Toronto
What is pelvic floor physiotherapy?
Pelvic floor physiotherapy is a form of physical therapy that strengthens the pelvic floor muscles. The pelvic floor is a bowl-shaped group of muscles that support the bowel (colon), bladder, rectum, and other organs (i.e., the prostate in men and the uterus in women).
What can pelvic floor physiotherapy treat?
The pelvic floor can be weakened by several factors, including:
- Heavy lifting
- Chronic bronchitis
- Changes in hormone levels
- Being overweight or obese
- Lack of core muscle strength
- A general lack of fitness
Pelvic floor physiotherapy treats several conditions, many of which are specific to a patient’s sex.
Male incontinence and frequent urination
Even though incontinence often occurs more frequently as people grow older, that doesn’t make it any less humiliating. In many cases for men, pelvic floor weakness often leads to incontinence and the need to urinate more frequently. Strengthening a man’s pelvic floor can result in fewer embarrassing incidents and a life with fewer bathroom breaks. Pelvic floor physiotherapy can improve and treat the following incontinence issues:
- Fecal incontinence
- Urinary incontinence
- Irritable bowel syndrome (IBS)
- Straining to begin or end urination
- Needing to urinate more than every 3 to 4 hours
- Waking up to urinate more than one time a night
Chronic pelvic pain syndrome
For men suffering from chronic pelvic pain syndrome, pelvic floor physiotherapy can be an incredibly helpful treatment option.
Common symptoms of chronic pelvic pain system include:
- Hip pain
- Penile, scrotal, and/or perineal pain
- Erectile dysfunction (ED)
- Painful bowel movements
- Pain following ejaculation
Painful and/or premature ejaculation
Painful ejaculation is more than a symptom of chronic pelvic pain syndrome; it may be a separate issue entirely. Having pain during sex is not a normal experience. If ejaculating is causing you pain or if you’re ejaculating prematurely too often, pelvic floor physiotherapy may be a good treatment option.
It’s very common for prostate cancer survivors who’ve had their prostate surgically removed to experience incontinence and erectile dysfunction. Pelvic floor physiotherapy is used to treat both of these issues.
Bacterial prostatitis is easily treated with antibiotics. But not every prostatitis case is caused by bacteria. Nonbacterial prostatitis is a common issue, but doctors do not know its root cause. Medications can provide some relief, but pelvic physiotherapy has been shown to be an effective treatment option for nonbacterial prostatitis.
What therapies are used to strengthen the pelvic floor muscles?
A pelvic floor physiotherapist will work closely with patients to determine the best therapy options on an individual basis. Common components of pelvic floor physiotherapy often include:
- Education: An educational component to pelvic floor physiotherapy can help patients know which muscles to contract and relax during their physiotherapy sessions. Patients may also learn to develop hygienic habits that can improve their symptoms.
- Exercises: Patients are taught how to contract and relax their pelvic floor muscles as well as timing and breathing techniques. Kegels are one of the more commonly known pelvic floor exercises, and they are not just for women. These exercises can strengthen the pelvic floor muscles and loosen or tighten any muscles that need an adjustment.
- Massages: Also referred to as manual therapy, massages can help improve blood circulation.
Why should I see a pelvic floor physiotherapist?
Pelvic floor physiotherapy can improve several aspects of your life. Incontinence and/or frequent urination can interrupt you in the middle of things you want to do and often result in embarrassing situations. Strengthening your pelvic floor with physiotherapy can help you avoid accidents and take fewer bathroom breaks, allowing you to regain control of your life and schedule.
Sex is not something to fear or dread, but for anyone experiencing pain during sex, it certainly can be. Painful sex, disappointing sex, or simply no sex at all can hurt you and our partner’s relationship. Pelvic floor physiotherapy can make sex painless and a better experience for everyone involved. It also can improve blood flow, resulting in better sex, better erections, and better orgasms.
Though it may be uncomfortable to talk about these issues, it’s important to communicate them and to learn about them. When you learn more about your body, you’re learning more about yourself. This can help you take better care of yourself.
Where can I do pelvic floor physiotherapy in Toronto?
Oakwood Health’s Toronto location offers pelvic floor physiotherapy treatments. Give us a call today to learn more about pelvic floor physiotherapy or to schedule a consultation!